M. C. Beaton, Emily goes to Exeter, Narrator: Helen Lesanti

Emily Goes to Exeter Cover Image author M. C. Beaton
Emily Goes to Exeter, by M. C. Beaton

Emily goes to Exeter
The Traveling Matchmaker Series, book 1.
M. C. Beaton, writing as Marion Chesney            
Narrator: Helen Lesanti
5 hours 39 minutes
Helen Lesanti Narrator Image. narratorreviews.org
Helen Lesanti, Narrator

Helen Lesanti, narrator for Emily Goes to Exeter, has a lovely voice for a Regency Romance, her gentle and kindly sounding characterizations give a legitimacy to the era and setting. Lesanti's voice is universal for all ages, Hannah, a forty five year old spinster, is given a firm voice that is use to having her orders obeyed, yet maintains an innocence appropriate to her naiveness. Her younger voices are expressive and youthful for Emily and her friends, evoking good mental images of their frivolity, moody, and highly emotional natures. I was very taken with her lecherous vagabond, who attempts to assault Emily. Lesanti's, reading is smooth and well paced , with great dramatization. I was quickly engrossed in the story, because of Lesanti's excellent reading.

Audio Book Review: Emily Goes to Exeter by M. C. Beaton

Hannah Pym, went into service at the tender age of twelve, through the years, she worked her way up from scullery maid, and finally to housekeeper for the Clarence family. Hannah was happy and content in her work, she liked her employers and there had been more than enough going on to keep her busy as, Mrs. Clarence, frequently had house guest, hosted lavish parties, and infused energy into the mansion.

When Mrs. Clarence, runs off with the footman, never to be heard from again, Mr. Clarence, falls into a deep depression, rooms are shut off, there are no more parties, few house guests, and soon half the staff, are let go, with fewer duties to perform, Hannah, starts retreating into her own dream world, daily watching for the Flying Machine, as the stagecoach was then called, she yearns to be on that Flying Machine, off on some exciting adventures of her own.

When Mr. Clarence passes away, his brother Sir George, inherits the house. The relatives are gathered and the will is read, they learn Mr. Clarence, has been very generous with the servants, he bequeaths Hannah, five thousands pounds. She is overcome, and very pleased, as an heiress she can now do as she likes.

Sir George, is a kind gentleman, he asks her what she plans to do now she is an independent woman. Hannah, has no hesitation about her decision, she wants to travel on the Flying Machine, somewhere, anywhere. Sir George, points out the hazards of traveling in winter, Hannah, is not discouraged and is eager to begin her own adventures. Sir George helps her arrange her affairs, and she sets off the following week for Exeter, on the Flying Machine. Sir George, has an attraction to Hannah, and wants her to return when her adventure is over and tell him about her journey.

Sir George’s warnings are prophetic, a three-day journey to Exeter, with a drunken stagecoach driver, finds them overturned in the snow, but soon rescued, the passengers are drenched, tired and traumatized, yet, the stubborn coachman insist on continuing the journey. Further disasters befall them and raging snowstorms lengthen their trip. 

They all become very well acquainted when stranded together at an Inn. Hannah, discovers none of her fellow passengers are who they present themselves to be, and with all the mishaps on their journey we get to know each of the passengers traveling with Hannah, quite well. 

Hannah, for the first time in her life has found her wings as matchmaker for more than one couple on the journey to Exeter, and is far more resourceful than she could have ever imagined. With guidance and a firm hand from Hannah, Emily, learns to be less snobbish, and arrogant, and finds her inner substance.

Only M. C. Beaton, could devise such a treacherous plot, with many sideline stories that she interweaves into a satisfying mystery, romance, and action packed tale. Beaton, is a truly fine author, her characters always are captivating, the weather is always a mood setting part of the tale, and she never disappoints.  


There's Nothing to Be Afraid Of: Marcia Muller, Narrator: Laura Hicks A Sharon McCone Mystery, Book 7

There's Nothing to Be Afraid Of:
A Sharon McCone Mystery, Book 7
Marcia Muller
Narrator: Laura Hicks
7 hours 33 minutes
Whispersync for Voice: Yes

Laura Hicks Narrator for Marcia Muller Sharon McCone Mystery Series
Narrator: Laura Hicks
Narrator, Laura Hicks, does a great performance of Sharon McCone, her voice could be defined as young, or up to woman in her middle years. Her character interpretations are excellent. Her definition of foreign characters is outstanding. Ms. Hicks easily and skillfully, alternates between male or female characters. Author, Marcia Muller, has created a long running series of books for Sharon McCone, pre-dating some other mystery series authors. Laura Hicks, does justice to all of the Marcia Muller series that she has narrated. The first in the series, Edwin of the Iron Shoes, was first published in 1977, Sharon McCone since then has developed into a stronger more mature personality. Laura Hicks, has grown along with McCone, never losing the basic personality of Sharon. Between the first book, 1977, to the current edition, 2012, there have been a few other narrators, the similarity in their voices, makes it easier to maintain the original essence of Sharon McCone.

Marcia Muller Author of Sharon McCone Mystery Series
 Marcia Muller Author

Marcia Muller, conveys a deep and detailed impression of the people and territory of San Francisco. There's Nothing to Be Afraid Of, gives an excellent taste of the city and the population of the tenderloin. Prior to the influx of Vietnamese refuges, the tenderloin was populated with many homeless and semi homeless people. As in 2012, many, had problems with drug addiction or alcohol or both. As the population continues to increase, livable places have become more scarce and pricier. If you have any interest in history, San Francisco, or the underbelly of the city, the Sharon McCone, mysteries is like a mini sneak peak into the past.

The Vietnamese residents, of the Globe hotel, located in the middle of the tenderloin, hire Private Investigator Sharon McCone to find out who, is terrifying them and their children. someone is scaring their children when they return from school, shadowy figures jump out at them, the electricity goes off unexpectedly and ghostly shadows play on the walls.

McCone, delves into questioning people, explores every nook and cranny of the Globe hotel, and finally interviews the owner. The owner seems to have the most to gain from ridding the hotel of the Vietnamese residents. Since he is unable to find a buyer, let alone get anyone to look at the building, McCone focuses on him, even as she continues to look for others with a motive to scare the gentle and unobtrusive residents.

McCone, is feeling some stress and in conflict with other workers at All Souls Legal Cooperative. McCone, has been on their staff for a number of years, previously she enjoyed a good relationship with them, she's baffled about their recent snubbing of her. When she gets a note on her car, telling her to not park in the space she has been parking in for a long time, that it is reserved for lawyers, her B.S. meter goes berserk. Its concrete evidence to her, that what she only previously sensed, as a shunning, is out and out warfare.

The stress in her work environment is threatening to overflow into her investigation work. She resolves to get to the bottom of it, and quickly. McCone, is lead into the seedy, porn industry and meets up with some of the local color, a poet loving, man, who is mentally unstable, and the zealot preacher, who spends his days preaching on street corners. Things turn serious when a sixteen year old boy is found murdered and another young man has disappeared. As McCone, sifts through the suspects, we are treated with insights into Vietnamese traditions, San Francisco history, and a huge cast of supporting characters, full of enough surprises and variety, to keep you listening, or turning those pages.

Marcia Muller There's Nothing to Be Afraid of
There's Nothing to be Afraid Of
Author: Marcia Muller
Narrator: Laura Hicks